Rebirth

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Rebirth is frequently used as a synonym of the term reincarnation, meaning the re-embodiment of consciousness after it left a previous body at the time of death.

The Buddhist teachings refuse the existence of a fixed reincarnating entity and postulate that it is a stream of consciousness (Pali: viññana-sotam, Sanskrit: vijñāna-srotām, vijñāna-santāna, or citta-santāna) what, upon death, takes a new birth. This consciousness is neither identical nor entirely different from that in the previous rebirth, but the two form a causal continuum or stream. Some English-speaking Buddhists prefer the term "rebirth" or "re-becoming" (Sanskrit: punarbhava; Pali: punabbhava) to "reincarnation" as they take the latter to imply a fixed entity that is reborn.[1]

Notes

  1. "Reincarnation in Buddhism: What the Buddha Didn't Teach" By Barbara O'Brien, About.com